Pep Guardiola has confirmed that his Man City side will be without 5 squad players for their trip to Stamford Bridge. Kyle Walker and Gabriel Jesus continue to self-isolate following recent positive coronavirus tests. Three other unnamed City squad members are also in isolation which led to City’s game against Everton on Monday being postponed.
Chelsea boss Frank Lampard is expecting Sunday’s clash of Blues to go ahead despite the number of positive cases and has faith in the precautions both sides are taking.
Assuming it does, Lampard should have Hakim Ziyech available who is due back from his hamstring injury, although Reece James swops places with him on the treatment table having picked up a similar injury.
Chelsea come into this game having only won one of their past five Premier League matches, taking four points from a possible 15. And this is not traditionally a good time of year for them as the Blues have failed to win their opening Premier League fixture in each of the past four calendar years. But they have been strong at home recently, only losing one in the last 14 and that was against champions Liverpool.
Manchester City are currently unbeaten in 10 matches in all competitions, and all three points in this game would give them three consecutive league fixtures for the first time this season.
However, with Jesus out and Aguero not at full fitness, questions still remain over the gifted squad who have only amassed 26 points – their lowest record after 14 matches for 10 years.
The game kicks off at 430pm on Sunday the 3rd of January.